The improvement is confirmed on the side of the fire in the Landiras sector in Gironde where the balance sheet is stabilized at 13,800 hectares burned, this Thursday morning. “The fire is stabilized but not fixed, specifies the sub-prefect of Langon, Vincent Ferrier. It no longer evolves but we cannot say that it will not evolve. » Resurgence of fire continues to be dealt with on the fragile edges, in particular to the south of the southern sector (Hostens, Saint-Symphorien).
There was no additional damage during the night from Wednesday to Thursday and the sub-prefect announced that discussions would take place this Thursday with the mayors of the 16 municipalities concerned to consider the first returns of the evacuees. “Inside the perimeter, there are 1,219 houses and hundreds of others on its immediate outskirts and only two have burned down,” emphasizes the sub-prefect.
A drone to spot hot spots underground
Obviously, all municipalities are not in the same boat and for those in the heart of the fire zone, returns are not possible for at least several days. Problems of damaged networks and degraded road infrastructures will also have to be dealt with in order to organize these returns. “If we waited to be absolutely certain that there was no longer any risk, we would wait months,” he explains. There is a good balance to be found to guarantee the safety of people and to make their return possible. And the inhabitants will be warned that new evacuations may take place after their return since there are still occasions and the weather forecast for the coming weeks promises to be complicated with hot and dry conditions.
Since Wednesday, a ripper drone has been made available to the teams fighting the Landiras fire. It makes it possible to map hot spots at an altitude of 1,500 meters and there are still many of them, especially in the south. “We have a satellite image which allows us to materialize the hot spots with the coordinates to have targeted actions”, details the lieutenant-colonel of the SDIS of the Gironde Charles Lafourcade. An asset for the exploration of the basement up to 30 or 40 centimeters. “It allows us to better understand if we have peat and if the fire is buried it progresses, under the ground”, he adds.
“It will take weeks before being completely reassured”
The firefighters try to “drown” the edges and to drown everything so that there are no more fumaroles, release of steam from the ground. Urban trucks not suitable for forest tracks are parked on the roads to drown out the slightest smoke.
To fix this fire it will take a long time. “It will take weeks and weeks before being completely reassured about this sector. And when it is fixed it will not expand but reruns may continue within. Colonel Lafourcade is also worried about the situation in the South-East, which has sent reinforcements to Gironde and could well repatriate them if necessary.